There was a sad story to be read between the lines of this morning’s Seattle Times.
It begins on the front page and ends near the gutter of the sports page.
It begins with Seattle reeling from a committee of NBA owners’ vote to keep the Sacramento Kings where they are. Those trying to bring basketball back to Seattle spoke of deep disappointment, but the photo of a deflated basketball said it all.
Then there was the write-up of the Mariners’ third-straight win at Safeco, a 6-2 win over the Baltimore Orioles that followed series win over the L.A. Angels.
A whopping 9,818 people came out for the game, the first time fewer than 10,000 people have attended a Mariners game since the team moved into their new stadium. It’s the third time this season the attendance record has reached a record low.
Am I the only one who sees some collective, cognitive dissonance here? Do we pine for a new team while forsaking one we have? Granted, the M’s have laid some goose eggs so far this season. And they might not have any marquee players to rally around. But the Sonics, if they return, will inevitably put up some bad rosters too. Every team does.
So, I think it’s reasonable to ask: Do we feel deflated this morning because we don’t have a basketball team coming to town, or because we don’t have a winning basketball team coming to town? If it’s the latter – if the only type of team Seattle will get excited about and not give up on in the first month of the season is one with an over .500 record and a couple of all stars – then we have bigger problems than David Stern.